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Tacoma Advertising In Silicon Valley To Lure Tech Companies

Scott Hingst

Silicon Valley tech giants such as Facebook, Twitter, Google and Apple have all been opening offices in Seattle in recent years.

Now, the City of Destiny wants in on the action. Tacoma recently paid $2,600 to run a quarter-page ad in the San Jose Mercury News, one of the biggest newspapers serving California's Silicon Valley, aimed at persuading tech companies that want to expand in the Pacific Northwest to look 35 miles south of Seattle.

The ad was the brain child of Ricardo Noguera, Tacoma's community and economic development director.

"I'm saying, `Hey, you have some opportunities you're missing in Pierce County right here in Tacoma,'" Noguera said. 

He says for starters, there are people qualified for the jobs - lots of folks commute every day from Tacoma to King County to work in tech.

And the cost of living in Tacoma is another selling point.

"Our housing prices are reasonable. Our office rents are reasonable," Noguera said. "Take a good look at Tacoma. We’re here to help."

The median home price in Pierce County in March was $240,000 compared with $411,000 in King County. Of course, even that is a bargain to people from San Francisco County, where the median was almost $1.3 million.

In July 2017, Ashley Gross became KNKX's youth and education reporter after years of covering the business and labor beat. She joined the station in May 2012 and previously worked five years at WBEZ in Chicago, where she reported on business and the economy. Her work telling the human side of the mortgage crisis garnered awards from the Illinois Associated Press and the Chicago Headline Club. She's also reported for the Alaska Public Radio Network in Anchorage and for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.